“I’ve always been fascinated with the figure beautifully rendered and by pattern and decoration. In my new work, I focus on these two interests: my figure studies are given a context within the designs found in erotic Japanese “Shunga” prints, Persian miniatures and the pattern traditions of Eastern Art: realism and pattern/Eastern and Western aesthetics.”
Michael Bergt was born in a small Nebraska farming community. At the age of five, he decided he wanted to be an artist. When he was eight years old, his family moved to Denver. At nineteen, Michael became friends with a group of artists, Beat poets and late-night coffee drinkers in lower downtown Denver. Dividing his time between college, odd jobs and painting, his fellow artists encouraged him to "just paint."
In 1978, Michael spent time in San Francisco, where he painted and eventually met the art dealer John Pence who gave him his first major one-man show in 1980. He then moved to the city to work closely with the gallery, and produced several exhibitions. In 1985 he met his future wife, Tamara, a fellow artist, and they decided to move to northern Spain. For three years they lived in an old estate in the country where they were able to pursue a self-directed study in some of the great museums and cultural centers throughout Europe, drawing and painting constantly.
Before returning home in 1988, Michael began a correspondence with Paul Cadmus, a tempera painter he admired greatly. They eventually met, became friends, and with Paul's support, showed together at Midtown Gallery in New York City. Although he settled in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Michael was showing his work primarily in New York over a ten-year period. From 1995 until 2007, Michael showed with Turner Carroll gallery in Santa Fe, and is currently beginning to work with Gerald Peters Gallery in Santa Fe.
In 2005, Michael was elected as a sculptor member of the National Sculpture Society (NSS).